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The student news site of Peddie School

The Peddie News

The student news site of Peddie School

The Peddie News

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What’s next for former House Speaker McCarthy? Does Mike Johnson know what he’s in for?

Jonathan+Ernst+-+Reuters
Jonathan Ernst – Reuters

On October 3, 2023, several Republican representatives voted to oust Speaker of House Kevin McCarthy. It was a historic moment for the members of Congress as it was the first time the House removed its leader with a vote of 216-210.

The US government was on the verge of shutting down after spending more than it received in taxes and was pressured to come up with an outline for a spending solution. McCarthy received a lot of backlash after pushing out the stopgap spending bill, a funding agreement that lasted from October 2 to November 17, 2023. 

Kevin McCarthy, Former House Speaker – Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Far-right-leaning Republicans threatened to oust him if he worked with Democrats to pass the bill. McCarthy failed to win enough Republican votes. In a desperate attempt to prevent the government from shutting down, he put the bill on the floor. The passing Senate vote was 88 to 9.

A handful of members from both parties were furious and stressed, scrambling to fund both the US government and aid the Russia-Ukraine war. According to a late September New York Times article titled “Biden Signs Bill Keeping the Government Open Through Mid-November”, “Members of both parties said they were confident they could win money for Ukraine in the weeks ahead, but the failure to provide any money in the ill was a reflection of diminishing Republican backing for added funding for Kyiv.”

After relying on the Democratic party to avoid a governmental crisis, McCarthy was ousted. On October 25, after three weeks of a stalemate, Congressman Mike Johnson was elected as the new speaker of the House. Though a lot of politicians in governmental positions have had previous experience with their work, according to Politico, Mike Johnson has had limited experience which may not work the best in his favor. 

Mike Johnson, House Speaker – Win McNamee/Getty Images

His rise to power, second in line to the president, was such a sudden move it provoked a deep dive into his background before he was handed the gavel of power. The 51 -year-old nominee had been liked by many of his colleagues in previous years but had a low standing and political power, so his new position as House speaker took many by surprise. Many others were hesitant about this decision since the Republicans made a desperate attempt to get the House back in business.

During a news conference on the evening of his election, Johnson announced, “This group here is ready to govern, and we’re going to govern well. You’re going to see this group looking to work like a well-oiled machine. We owe that to the American people.” 

After the Republicans were left in disarray with lawmakers scrambling for a plan of action in aiding the war in Ukraine and the Middle East, many are now hoping that the Louisiana House member will be able to overcome struggles and decisions previous candidates had failed to do.

Johnson is already on the move as he strives to set in place a national abortion ban, approve a tentative legislative schedule to prevent another governmental crisis, and much more. Next year will be a test on Johnson to see if he can keep up with the pressure of the nation. Will he be an asset or a liability for the Republicans?

 

Sources:

Alvord, Kyler. “Kevin McCarthy Ousted as House Speaker in Unprecedented Recall Vote.” People, 3 October 2023,

 (“Who Is Mike Johnson? New Republican Speaker of the House – WSJ”)https://people.com/kevin-mccarthy-ousted-house-speaker-recall-vote-8346913. Accessed 6 November 2023.

Alvord, Kyler. “Kevin McCarthy Ousted as House Speaker in Unprecedented Recall Vote.” People, 3 October 2023, https://people.com/kevin-mccarthy-ousted-house-speaker-recall-vote-8346913. Accessed 6 November 2023.

Warburton, Moira, et al. “Kevin McCarthy ousted as House Speaker in historic vote.” Reuters, 4 October 2023, https://www.reuters.com/world/us/mccarthy-says-he-thinks-he-will-survive-leadership-challenge-us-house-2023-10-03/. Accessed 6 November 2023.

“Who Is Mike Johnson? New Republican Speaker of the House – WSJ.” The Wall Street Journal, 25 October 2023, https://www.wsj.com/politics/new-speaker-mike-johnson-made-his-name-as-cultural-conservative-f1e51e78. Accessed 6 November 2023.

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